Yesterday I met my very first blogging friend in real life. Bre from Rooms FOR Rent. She was just as great in person and our kids were fast friends. You know they’re fast friends when within 10 minutes of being together they are already bossing each other around.
In anticipation of Bre’s visit I gave myself a little list of things to do besides cleaning frantically. Painting our back door Club Navy by Behr was one of them. As I prepared I found myself worrying. Constantly worrying. What if Bre thought I was a fraud? What if she saw my house in real life and thought it was terrifically ugly? What if she found Cherrios that the vacuum somehow didn’t find and she saw a patio that was a all weedy? As I worried I started thinking about the book The Nesting Place and how the author, The Nester (you know, from that fabulous blog) talked about hospitality and creating a home that isn’t perfect but one that is welcoming. And I started to remind myself that:
a. Bre has children
b. Bre has posted photos online of her house in an imperfect state
c. She has read that same book
And I started to cut myself some slack. Any person reading this blog knows our house is only a third to half done. And any person with kids know that cleaning for company while you have children is the most frustrating job ever.
I don’t ever want to dread people coming over just because our house isn’t “done” or perfect. I find that I’m always apologizing to guests for the way our house looks even though we are really trying hard to make it beautiful and welcoming. Is anyone else with me on this? Do you freak out about drop in visitors or about making a good impression? I seriously doubt I’m the only one.
I want to change my attitude this summer. I want to be so grateful for what we have, even if it’s not done. I want a house that’s clean, because it’s more welcoming to guests (and to us!), but I need to realize that at this stage of my life it can’t be perfect all the time (which is how it would be if I were single with no children). I need to realize that if a friend drops by in the morning and our breakfast is still everywhere and I haven’t cleaned up dishes and the dirty laundry is in a pile by the basement door and Drew has just dumped out every puzzle piece we own THAT IT’S OKAY.
It’s so easy to compare ourselves and our homes to others. We generally only put the best photos of our spaces or lives online. I’m never posting pictures of my children throwing temper tantrums at dinner or of our basement (easily the worst spot in our house, it’s a bottomless pit). In those dozens of moments where I compare myself and our space to others I tell myself that I tell myself all sorts of lies like what we have or who I am isn’t good enough. My God made me into a great woman. A woman who loves fixing up houses. Who loves making pancakes with her children, even if it makes a mess. A woman who starts three projects and leaves out my paint and wood filler for days. He made me into a woman who is pretty great and the minute I start comparing who I am or my space with what others have I’ve missed out on the joy of who He made ME to be.
Embrace your space this weekend, whether you live in a rental, a fixer-upper or a gorgeous mansion. Wherever we live we have the tools to practice hospitality and meet people where they are. And who knows… they could be coming from a house with Cheerios that somehow got stuck into their jute rug too. You might just be making them feel more comfortable. 🙂
We are away at a wedding this week so I’ll be posting less, maybe not at all, this week but I’ll be on Instagram so catch me over there!
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